Can You Eat Candy Canes With Braces? [Explained]

Our favorite holiday treat – candy cane – is next in line. Some people would like to maintain that it is unacceptable to even think about trying to eat sweets with braces. So for those with a sweet tooth and never want to miss the fun of the holiday, a big question is: can you eat candy canes with braces?

Can you eat candy canes with braces?

No, you should not eat candy canes with braces. The short reason is that hard candies can damage your braces, and sugar can cause cavities.

It’s not only the candy cane’s texture, but they are also very sticky. It could break a bracket or wire. It can get caught between your braces and be very difficult to remove. 

The candy cane can lead to serious problems for your braces and teeth, including cavities. The bacteria that cause cavities love sugary foods, so it’s crucial to be extra diligent about brushing and flossing your teeth if you do decide to eat candy canes.

Your best bet is to wait until your braces are off. In the meantime, you can enjoy plenty of other holiday treats without damaging your braces. Chocolate is a softer sweet that would not wear down your metal mouth. Gingerbread cookies, anyone?

How to clean your teeth with braces?

Even if you are careful, candy canes can still affect your braces. If you do eat one, be sure to clean your teeth thoroughly afterward. How?

Take action quickly!

The best thing you can do is to brush your teeth right away. If you have braces, it is necessary to brush after every meal, particularly if you’ve consumed candy canes to avoid staining and cavities.

If you can’t brush your teeth right away, at least rinse your mouth with water. Rinsing will help to initially remove some of the sugar from your teeth and gums. You can also use a fluoride mouthwash to remove any lingering particles of candy cane from your teeth and gums and to protect your teeth from cavities.

Be extra gentle and thorough 

When you do brush your teeth, be sure to use a soft-bristled toothbrush and gentle strokes. You wouldn’t want to damage your braces or irritate your gums, so brush for at least two minutes, making sure to hit all surfaces of your teeth and remove all candy cane particles.

Use floss picks

If you have braces, you know that traditional flossing can be difficult. You can use floss picks to help make the process easier and more effective. Be sure to floss between all your teeth, including the back molars where the excess candy canes are likely to get stuck.

Visit your orthodontist

If you are concerned about how the candy canes may have affected your braces, visit your orthodontist. He or she will be able to check for any damage and make any necessary adjustments to your braces.


Candy canes are a holiday tradition, but if you have braces, you need to avoid them. Remember, hard candies will cause all sorts of dental problems and can break your wires and brackets. Moreover, sugary candy can cause cavities. If you do eat candy canes, be sure to brush and floss your teeth well afterward. Visit your orthodontist to make sure that your brackets are in place and your braces are well. And next year, enjoy holiday gingerbread cookies instead!